Archive for calgary


Posted in Ales, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on February 22, 2012 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Wild Rose Brewery, Calgary, Alberta

  • 7.3%ABV
  • No head to speak of, only light film around edge.
  • Dark copper-orange colour to light brown and fairly opaque and lots of sediment.
  • Strong yeasty aroma, that is sweet and with lots of banana notes.
  • Has the typical flavour of Belgian style ales we’ve come to expect, yeasty with sweet banana and maltiness that balances the alcoholic level well
  •  Nothing to really set it apart from other beers in this category.
  • Overall a good beer from Wild Rose that stays true to the spirit of Belgium, pick it up anywhere Wild Rose is sold, for a limited time.


Posted in Ales, Pale Ale, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on January 11, 2012 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Wild Rose Brewery, Calgary, Alberta

  • This ale was brewed as a celebration to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Mount Royal University, a close neighbour of the Wild Rose Brewery. Also this is our 100th beer we have reviewed since the start of our Calgary Beer Drinkers project. 100 different beers since August. Cheers to us! Cheers to MRU! Cheers to Wild Rose! Cheers to good quality craft beer!
  • 5% ABV
  • Light to almost a negligible head, small islands of foam.
  • Reddish brown, opaque beer
  • The aroma is sweet and malty, typical of an english ale.
  • There is a nice hoppy flavour. Not sure exactly what style Wild Rose was brewing here, but I would probably call this a pale ale. (I have been wrong before 😦 Anyone please correct me if I am)
  • Very well balanced and refreshing beer.
  • Love the 1 L sized bottle, perfect for sharing with a couple of friends.
  • This was a limited release beer, so it may not be available any longer. If you see it, pick a bottle up, definitely worth a try.


Posted in Ales, Cream Ale, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on October 24, 2011 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Pumphouse Brewery Ltd., Moncton, New Brunswick 

  • 5%ABV
  • An unfortunately unappealing appearance from the pour, off yellow with a really weak head that hardly lasts.
  • Smells like garden fresh vegetables, squash and tomatoes especially, cucumber.  Reminds us all of V8 vegetable cocktail.
  • This beer is very dry, and the vegetable characteristics persist, making for an unpleasant beer.
  • Through research we have discovered that a vegetable taste in beer can indicate that a beer that has imperfections or has gone bad.  Since this beer was flown to us from Moncton there is a possibility it may have been affected by cabin pressure.  I look forward to trying this beer properly.


Posted in Ales, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on October 24, 2011 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Brewster Brewing Company, Calgary, Alberta

  • 5%ABV
  • Very sufficient head, with an auburn tinge.
  • Reddish amber colour, off the pour, this beer gives off an aroma of roasted nuts.
  • Rich malty taste with a hint of bitterness and a surprising smokiness thats rounds off this beer quite nicely.
  • An surprisingly nice beer from a great local brewery,
  • zMix this one with the Brewsters Raspberry to make the infamous HammeRas, delicious!


Posted in Ales, Flavoured Beers, Reviews, Wheat Beers with tags , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2011 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Brewsters Brewing Company,  Calgary, Alberta

  • 5%ABV
  • Full frothy head from the pour but disappears quickly.
  • Rich gold colour.
  • Artificial blueberry sweet smell with undertones of bitterness and soap-like aromas.  After letting sit for some time loses its aroma completely.
  • The taste is lacklustre, too light, almost not like a beer at all.  Artificial blueberry flavour mostly predominant but that’s about it.
  • Not at the top of the list for flavoured beers, but we definitely see why people like it, light and refreshing.


Posted in Articles, Brewing with tags , , , , , on October 7, 2011 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Now we’re on to the fun part, the cooking. I’ve got all my equipment thoroughly sanitized and ready to go, cleared my work station and sanitized it as well, and I’ve washed my hands well.

The first step is to bring some of the water we’re working with to a boil. This recipe calls for 21 Litres of water, but boiling all that is just not feasible. I have an 18l stock pot, so I boiled 11 litres of the brewing spring water and will add the rest in the fermenter. Add the malt extract to the water and stir vigorously to dissolve, the malt is what gives the beer colour and sweetness.

Be sure to stir the malt constantly, it is very dense and can settle at the bottom of your pot and scorch, which would make a very unpleasant beer indeed! The 10+ Litres of water may take some time to boil, so responsibly enjoy a beer now while you wait. Once at a boil, ensure the foam build up doesn’t cover the liquid and seal it off from oxygen. I added our wonderfully smelling hops to the mix and let that boil for 45 min, this mixture of malt, water and hops is known as the wort.

It was at this point that I realized one pot, despite its large size, would just not be enough. I had to take out another pot and split the wort.

After the 45 min, in which time another beer was responsibly enjoyed, of rapid, controlled boiling, it’s time to add the final ingredients. The wort is taken off the heat and the Irish moss(an ingredient used to clarify the beer), yeast nutrient(exactly what it sounds like) and the molasses(provides flavour, colour and food for the yeast) are all added and stirred in.

Again be sure to stir constantly, the molasses can scorch on the bottom of the pot. Unfortunately this last stage of the brewing and fermenting is where I missed out on some picture opportunities,as I found out by brewing beer alone it proved quite difficult to pour, stir and take pictures at the same time, as well as racking the beer and holding the strainer. Next time, and for you at home, be sure to add assistant to your equipment or ingredient list.

Once it comes back up to a boil, the second dose of hops is added and left to boil for 15min. This second dose develops the characteristic bitterness of the beer. At this point you’ll definitely be noticing the wonderful colour of the beer, a rich deep amber colour, and the wonderful aroma of the malt and hops.

After the 15 min rolling boil, and maybe another beer was responsibly shotgunned – probably not though, it’s time to cool off the beer. There exists a certain beer brewing piece of equipment known as a wort chiller, a coiling piece of copper tubbing that’s wrapped around the container of the wort and has cold water pumped through it, it’s probably the best way to do this. But not having the finances to afford such a device the bath tub was my best bet.

The wort is strained and siphoned into the plastic tub then into the bathtub it goes, with plenty of cold water and ice and some comforting bath time toys. I had bought 4 bags of ice and had one already at home, as well as dumped two full ice cube trays into the water, this wasn’t nearly enough and I had to head out to the convenience store down the street for four more bags!

When the beer reaches the optimal temperature for the yeast(this beer was 75F it varies depending on the strain) it was time to get it in the primary fermenter. I siphoned it again with the auto-siphon and hose, right into my 23L plastic carboy. The yeast was pitched directly into the carboy and stirred in. The airlock and rubber stopper were put in place and moved the whole thing into a coolish dark place to allow to ferment for one week. Be sure you keep your beer in a dark place! Or cover it, light will oxidize the beer and give it off flavours.

Stage one done, check back again soon for part 3, secondary fermentation.


Posted in Ales, Reviews, Wheat Beers with tags , , , , on October 3, 2011 by calgarybeerdrinkers

Brewsters Brewing Co., Calgary, Alberta

  • 5% Alcohol content, 17IBU’s
  • This Ale pours a medium body head over a transparent, golden-yellow straw coloured brew.
  • Very bubbly, continuous champagne like bubbles.
  • The nose has hints of ripe banana and dried apricots
  • This beer is extremely thirst quenching, and has slight lemon and stone fruit flavours.
  • Crisp finish, nicely balanced, yet simple on the palate.